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U.S Air Force chief: N.K. yet to master technology to put nuclear warhead on long-range missile

All Headlines 01:58 March 09, 2016

WASHINGTON, March 8 (Yonhap) -- North Korea is not believed to have mastered the technology to fit a nuclear warhead onto a long-range missile yet, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh said.

Welsh made the remark during a Pentagon briefing Monday, saying the commander of U.S. Northern Command "spends a lot of time worried about how we can be sure to take it out if they ever did develop the capability to combine a long-range missile with a warhead that was operable."

Asked if the North has reached the stage, Welsh said, "I don't think they're at that stage yet."

The North conducted its fourth nuclear test in January and a long-range missile test last month, demonstrating it is making strides in efforts to develop a long-range missile capable of reaching the U.S.

But many experts say the North has yet to master the technology to make nuclear warheads small enough to fit a long-range missile, and to make a missile capable of withstanding reentry into Earth's atmosphere

jschang@yna.co.kr
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